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Security matters – how safe is your motorhome?
So you’ve spent a small fortune buying a spanking new motorhome and can’t wait to try it out.
But before you hit the road, be sure to check that your vehicle is as secure as possible and that you have installed all the necessary bells and whistles to meet the terms and conditions of your Comfort Insurance policy.
At the top end of the market, most motorhomes will come with factory fitted immobilisers. Some dealers on high end vehicles will include a Thatham Category 1 alarm or a tracking system as part of the package, but if these are not included, it is well worth installing them yourself.
Comfort Insurance will give a 5% discount for each of the following: Thatcham Category 1 alarms, Aviva-approved tracking devices and a Thatcham Category 5 tracking devices.
If your vehicle is worth more than £55,000, you must have either a Thatcham Category 1 alarm, or an Aviva-approved tracking system, and if worth more than £75,000, you must have both in place.
Other security devices worth considering are an engine immobiliser, wheel clamps, a gas alarm, deadlocks, good quality locks on the habitation door and on the filler cap to discourage fuel theft.
A gas alarm is a good idea as it will alert you if you are sleeping in your vehicle and burglars spray the interior with gas in order to comatose you.
The rise in the value of precious metals has led to a surge in the theft of catalytic converters from cars, and now, motorhomes as well. The platinum contained in catalytic converters can be sold on to scrap metal dealers for good prices.
Once an unmarked converter has been removed from a vehicle, it’s quite difficult to match it to the vehicle it was stolen from, as there are no distinguishing marks.
To reduce the risk of this type of theft, always try to park your vehicle in a secure area or where it is busy and well lit.
It is possible to have your catalytic converter secured with a ’cat clamp’ by a firm called Catclamp (www.catclamp.co.uk) You could also consider marking the metal shell of the converter with a unique mark, so if it is removed by thieves it will be easier to trace back to your vehicle
Retainagroup offers a kit consisting of a virtually indestructible sticker, metal marking fluid and a window sticker (to warn thieves that the catalytic converter carries an identification mark). It costs £11.87 including VAT and postage.
Each mark contains a seven digit code and a 24 hour telephone number for the International Security Register which stores the code against vehicle details. A catalyst marking kit can be ordered from: www.TheISR.org or by phoning 01233 333000.
Taking these precautions does not guarantee 100% security, but anything which deters thieves or makes it harder for them to steal, or damage, your vehicle has to be a good idea.
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